Commonwealth Essay

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Rod Smith, Managing Director of Education at Cambridge University Press, said: "The Royal Commonwealth Society shares our vision of empowerment through education, and we’re thrilled to be sponsoring The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition once again.

We were astounded by the exceptional standard of entries in last year’s competition and are looking forward to celebrating exciting new work and to finding new voices from across the Commonwealth in 2017." The Queen’s Commonwealth Essay Competition was founded by the Royal Commonwealth Society in 1883 and is the world’s oldest international schools’ writing contest.

This year’s topic of ‘A Commonwealth for Peace’ asks young writers to explore peace at every level: from the personal to the political to the pan-Commonwealth." Sponsored by the Cambridge University Press, this highly prestigious competition aims to challenge young people’s thinking and the means by which they can express their views, using creative forms of writing such as essays, poems, stories or scripts.

Judges described entries to the 2016 competition as ‘imaginative’, ‘inspirational’, ‘ambitious’ and ‘profound’.

Building upon the 2016 theme of An Inclusive Commonwealth, this year’s topics ask for a more active understanding of the role of the Commonwealth as a network of and for democracy, Human Rights and peace. How can children and young people come together to build a peaceful society?

We are asking young writers to explore peace at every level, from the personal to the political to the pan-Commonwealth. ‘Peace cannot be learnt from a book or from religion. Kofi Annan said ‘Education is, quite simply, peace-building by another name.’ Do you agree?The top two Prize Winners will be flown to London for a special awards ceremony in the autumn and the Runners-Up will be invited to local awards ceremonies.All Gold, Silver and Bronze winners will receive certificates before the end of 2013 and entrants who didn't receive an award this year are entitled to certificates of participation.You have to reach out and touch the nations.’ How does this relate to the Commonwealth? Answer with reference to your country and/or the Commonwealth. Terms and Conditions Entries will be disqualified if they fail to meet any of the following requirements: The competition is open to nationals or residents of all Commonwealth countries and territories.Note: Special dispensation applies to entrants from Hong Kong, Ireland, The Gambia and Zimbabwe, who are entitled to enter the competition.Entrants must select a Senior or Junior topic depending on their age on 1st May 2017.Senior entrants must be born between 2nd May 1998 and 1st May 2003 (14-18) and Junior entrants must be born after 1st May 2003 (under 14 years of age).The judges were impressed at the creativity and research that entrants displayed in approaching the topics.As ever, the standard of entry was extremely high as entrants competed with their peers from every corner of the Commonwealth, so to win an award is a big achievement.The launch coincides with the United Nations’ International Day of Peace.Building upon the 2016 theme of An Inclusive Commonwealth, this year’s topics ask young people to explore a deeper understanding of the meaning of peace and the role of the Commonwealth as a network of and for democracy, human rights and peace.


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